A Letter from the President:
Inflow Chooses RingCentral as New Flagship UCaaS Partner
By Travis Dillard, President & CEO
We are excited to announce our new partnership with RingCentral!
Like everything else we do at Inflow, we’ve been very thoughtful about our selection. Like so many others, it would have been easier to just select 3 cloud providers, sign them up, and then quote all three to our customers. That said, this zero-value approach would have violated many of our core principles. This wouldn’t have allowed us to be specialized experts in our craft. It also wouldn’t allow us to provide our customers an unforgettable enablement and service experience. Looking for our flagship Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) partner has been a long, arduous process. Like our customers, we’ve had to navigate the crowded, and ever-changing, cloud landscape. Over the past year, we’ve evaluated seven of the industry’s leading providers.
We had the following requirements:
- Market Leadership
- Partnership Mentality and Enablement
We’re happy to say, RingCentral gets an “A” in all three categories!
RingCentral is, hands-down, the Gartner Magic Quadrant leader for UCaaS worldwide. They’re head and shoulders above their competition. With over 350,000 customers worldwide and 30%+ year-over-year growth, they’re doing something right. This intrigued us initially, but as we dug into the company and its offerings, we quickly understood why. Read on.
During our evaluation, we broke innovation into the following subcategories:
- Interface: The user and administrator interfaces are clean, easy to navigate, and have a next-generation look and feel. Additionally, we really liked the strong, yet easy to use, collaboration features.
- API / Integrations: The RingCentral Connect platform has a rich set of APIs. It’s more than rich, it’s industry-leading! Being a national, distributed, company, Inflow understands how mission-critical collaboration applications are to our operation and culture. We currently use ShoreTel, Slack, Zoom, Dropbox, Salesforce, and other applications internally. We were very excited to see the integrations RingCentral offers out of the box. Specifically, we like their “Slack-like” collaboration tool, Glip. This gives users presence, IM, file sharing, and other functionality. We’re also excited about their “in-skin” integration to Zoom for on-the-fly video conferencing and screen sharing. We plan on moving our internal system to RingCentral and consolidating all our collaboration applications into a single, clean, RingCentral interface. The best part? ALL RingCentral plans include Glip, Video Conferencing, SMS text, mobility, and other features. At this point, this is unprecedented in the industry.
Beyond the collaboration features, RingCentral integrates with other leading SaaS applications like Box, Oracle, Zendesk, Google, Salesforce, and many more. Last, RingCentral’s APIs and published SDKs allow us, and our customers, to build custom integrations to homegrown or other business applications. This provides increased flexibility and better technology alignment to the business’s needs.
- Reliability: We liked the fact that RingCentral has a global, distributed, fully redundant network. Calls are dynamically routed around broken links and RingCentral monitors quality metrics across all modes of communications. They have a financially-backed 99.999% SLA for qualified customers.
- Security: Communications are encrypted between all endpoints and RingCentral complies with industry-leading security standards. We also like the automated fraud detection and mitigation technology.
- Quality of Service: RingCentral utilizes a private backbone and provides end-to-end Quality of Service across broadband providers of your choice. They use the industry-leading codec OPUS which provides superior voice quality over public networks.
Partnership Mentality and Enablement
I saved these criteria for last. This is because we believe, hands down, this is our most important requirement. We feel strongly that you can be a market leader, have beautiful interfaces, and the best technology in the world, and still fail your customers. We see it with technology providers every day. The world of cloud is dynamic. The industry and customer demands change daily. Consolidation is the new norm. Cloud providers are constantly striving to innovate their products, avoid commoditization, and gain momentum through subscribers and customer acquisition. Unfortunately, service, enablement, and the customer experience are afterthoughts. Because of this, customers end up unhappy and looking for something better. Most of the time, they move from one painful relationship to another.
Fortunately, a few (very few) cloud providers see this as a significant challenge that needs to be solved. We’re happy to say that RingCentral is one of them. They, like us, believe companies shouldn’t try to be everything to everybody. They understand that this greedy mentality only ends in mediocrity and customer churn. They have the insight that the cost of customer acquisition is way too expensive to only lose them a year or less later. RingCentral has decided to be the best UCaaS provider in the world. They then partner with other specialists to provide a “best of breed” comprehensive technology, enablement, and services solution to the customer. They have an industry-leading administration and support tools that allow partners like Inflow to continue providing the high-quality, white glove implementation, enablement, consulting, and support services our customers have come to love and rely on. Many other cloud providers see the partner channel simply as a lead source they must pay commissions to. RingCentral values partners like Inflow because they see the long game. They understand that happy customers mean reduced attrition, increased adoption, and overall, a healthier, long-term revenue stream.
It doesn’t matter if the technology sits in a data closet or in data centers, Inflow realizes our core customers need superior support and services around their cloud UC and Contact Centers more than ever. This will never change.
We’re happy our evaluation journey is over. We’re confident we’ve picked the right horse. When our customers decide to evaluate cloud, we’re sure they’ll agree!
We’ll continue to focus on being the best onsite and cloud UC and Contact Center solution and support provider in the country. RingCentral rounds out our focused technology portfolio which includes Genesys PureCloud (Contact Center as a Service) and ShoreTel / Mitel (onsite and cloud UC and Contact Center). A comprehensive solution might include one, some, or all these providers, depending on the application and customer needs. I’m proud to say that the common denominator will be Inflow’s world-class consultation, implementation, support, and above all, unforgettable customer experience.